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Overlord II – 04

「死の軍勢」 (Shi no Gunzei)
“Army of Death”

Can one episode make up for past performance? Overlord certainly believes so. After spending a fair amount time dealing with our new friends the lizardmen, perceptive changed ever so slightly as the reasoning and purpose behind Ainz’s reptilian excursion was finally revealed. Dialogue heavy? Sure. Lacking in action? Definitely. Nevertheless I think we all know what it’s setting up for next week: total domination.

As discussed last time, the primary purpose of Cocytus’ expedition wasn’t to defeat the lizardmen, but rather educate Cocytus in the importance of independent thought. Having your subordinates follow your will to the letter may sound good in practice, but when unforeseen circumstances arise—and they always do—such rigid command structures quickly break down. The best systems always impart a degree of decentralization, where underlings are allowed to adapt to changing circumstances. Such action may run counter to the leader’s actual commands, but as Ainz succinctly states, so long as these bursts of independence benefit Ainz Ooal Gown, who really cares in the end? As long as the loyalty of the subordinates (i.e. floor guardians) is guaranteed, such growth only benefits Ainz, which to no surprise makes their subservience front and center in our spooky scary skeleton’s mind. Cannot always expect the kids to want to stay in the nest once they grow up. Well, unless you’re a bed warming Albedo of course.

What makes this aspect particularly intriguing though is the shift it represents in Overlord’s tone. This is no longer some wayward group of overpowered demons figuring out where they sit in the world, now we have a legitimate power block figuring out how to keep what they take. Part of Cocytus’ “training” wasn’t just learning how to lead and succeed, it was also about learning to see the long-term use in others which is critical for any sort of governance. Peace post-conquest relies on a peaceful populace, and such calm can only be obtained by instilling both fear and respect. In effect play nicely, but act ruthlessly if anyone breaks the established order. On one hand Ainz’s grand display (with Demiurge’s application of magic) was a display of potential ruthlessness for example, showing how easy it would be for him to wipe out an otherwise insignificant annoyance. On the other hand the promise to have Cocytus face the lizardman alone was respect, showing Ainz could be reasoned with and—most importantly—expected to uphold his bargains. It’s the sort of governance which allowed many an empire to thrive far beyond expectations, and one Ainz hopes he can trust his floor guardians to follow. Should they do so papa bones has the world by the skull horns, with the only thing missing being the people to impart his control over. Yeah, I think we all know where this story is heading next.

Before getting to those dreams of world conquest, however, first comes conquering the lizardmen and giving Cocytus the redemption he deserves. Pretty obvious what the outcome will be, but that doesn’t mean we’ll be lacking in entertainment. Overlord may have taken its time getting here, but with the pieces now coming together, the real fun is about to start.

January 31, 2018 at 12:33 am
32 comments »
  • January 31, 2018 at 12:40 amDevastator001

    Next Week… The Chair! XD Man that was a huge block! From LN I always imagined it to be like a 15ft tall boulder not a building O_O

  • January 31, 2018 at 12:42 amJames

    I am disappointed you didn’t mention our lizard impregnation proposal, yet took your time to screencap the exact moment that lasted 0.5 seconds

    • January 31, 2018 at 12:44 amPancakes

      I felt that moment spoke for itself :P

  • January 31, 2018 at 12:47 amDude

    Considering the amount of Shalltear and Albedo doujins around…Crusch doujins incoming?

  • January 31, 2018 at 2:29 amChris

    This episode was better but still not even remotely at the level of season 1.
    Plus all this episodes on lizards and still the only character I could feel attached is Rororo lol
    It was sad to see him so damaged in the previous episode and I am glad he was fine here.
    The lizard instead can all die for stealing precious minutes to our Ainz-sama!

    I still think it was a really bad idea to adapt this arc so thoroughly, they should have cut down on the lizard drama.

    By the way, Am I the only one that thinks teaching your underlying to act independently as long as it for the benefit of Nazarick and not Ainz itself?
    Maybe I saw too many movies where the creator of something is killed because he himself is seen as a menace by an AI.

    • January 31, 2018 at 2:44 amFlameStrike

      Haha, you should really check out the LNs if you liked Rororo! His part in them is much expanded upon. It’s interesting that from one PoV they are adapting it thoroughly, but on another it could be said that they are trimming it down. I think they are striking a pretty good balance. Like how much more stuff could you cut without just being better off cutting the whole thing?

      • January 31, 2018 at 3:29 amJames

        Light novel, manga and adaptation are all different ever so slightly, detail there, frozen lake here, the important part is that they have a lot of material to work with, so far adaptation is very good.

        Viewers seem confused as to why there is so much detail into Lizard Men, they don’t realize it’s just the foundation for the future of Nazarick and a slight preview of what’s to come. It’s one of those situations where at the beginning you go “why is this here?” but then as the time goes on you understand.

      • January 31, 2018 at 7:51 amChris

        I understand that there is a purpose for them, but since I doubt there would ever be a third season, I would have preferred if they compacted it as much as possible and focused on more interesting parts.
        If we were to receive a 52 episode season I wouldn’t mind 4-5 episode of boring lizards, but half season is too much, it’s all about percentage :D
        The main point here is that not only it switched point of view from the first season, but the real issue is that the lizard are totally boring characters, neither evil, neither funny or interesting.

    • January 31, 2018 at 11:42 pmPancakes

      It can be a bad idea, but as mentioned it comes down to loyalty. If your subordinates think you’re god they’re not going to be going against your wishes anytime soon, especially if you happen to be winning at the same time. Problems only really emerge if the situation starts falling apart or legitimate competitors appear (ex. Ainz’s real life friends).

      • February 1, 2018 at 8:17 amChris

        Pancakes,I wasn’t clear before, I even forgot part of the sentence…
        I mean the way he is teaching them, especially since they are in a game, he is teaching them to think independently as long it is for the benefit of Nazarick. He didn’t tell them to act for the benefit of Ainz, which is a really bad move.
        Being them AI, anything could trigger them to think that Ainz itself is either a danger or something that is slowing down Nazarick growth, so by trying to eliminate him they would be still loyal and trying to follow Ainz words.

  • January 31, 2018 at 4:00 amordnance11

    Shock and Awe tactics. Does Ainz has a sense of smell? He doesn’t have a nose to smell with? I supposed he hasn’t caught Albedo rolling around in his bed yet.

    Yes having his guardians capable of independent thought is good. But that also means their loyalty is not going to be guaranteed anymore.

    • January 31, 2018 at 5:01 amAex

      Given how much and how fondly they remember the other Supreme Beings, I never really took their loyalty as guaranteed. Sure they worship Ainz, but he’s also the only game in town. As long as that’s true I doubt they’d ever turn on him, but if, say, Touch Me or Peroroncino showed up and didn’t agree with what Ainz has been up to until an actual fight broke out, I could see things going the Civil War route without much of a stretch.

    • January 31, 2018 at 11:44 pmPancakes

      Given his verbal reactions I’m guessing he has a sense of smell. That or Albedo left more than perfume on those bed sheets :P

  • January 31, 2018 at 4:10 amGinobi47

    http://randomc.net/image/Overlord%20II/Overlord%20II%20-%2004%20-%20Large%2036.jpg

    “Impregnate Me”

    Words of wisdom at its finest.

    • January 31, 2018 at 4:14 amuv

      wow – at least make OVA of this

  • January 31, 2018 at 4:39 amAex

    I’m a sucker for character interaction, so I loved this episode.

    I also appreciate how even though Ainz is all for domination of lesser peoples, his mind still isn’t at the point of looking down on them as livestock like the Guardians. I think the fact that he missed what Demiurge was really alluding to when he talked about the “Sheep” skins shows that he has some humanity left, so we can probably expect him to avoid complete genocide. Maybe. He’d leave enough left alive so that they might be useful later on. Yeah…

    • January 31, 2018 at 11:50 pmPancakes

      Agreed, I particularly like how his humanity is represented by his eagerness to train the guardians into recognizing the talents of “lesser” beings. In some way Ainz knows their actions could cause problems post-conquest (Albedo and her attitude in particular) so he wants to ensure the transition from conquerors to governors is peaceful and stable.

  • January 31, 2018 at 5:40 amSaurus Warrior

    Should have spam Carnosaur and Temple Guard. GG

  • January 31, 2018 at 7:57 amChris

    I noticed a mistake in my first comment, I meant:
    “By the way, Am I the only one that thinks IT’S A BAD IDEA teaching your underlying to act independently as long as it for the benefit of Nazarick and not Ainz itself?
    Maybe I saw too many movies where the creator of something is killed because he himself is seen as a menace by an AI.”

    • January 31, 2018 at 11:09 amewok40k

      I serve the Empire, not the Emperor…
      So many rebellions were started with those words in our history.
      Many of them were succesful.
      Be careful what you wish for.

      • January 31, 2018 at 11:58 amWorldwidedepp

        Star Trek: Discovery… the actual episode.. well, they should take a look to understand it

        So, even in TV many rebellions started with this… I am not an Game of Thrones fan. But i think there is not much different

  • January 31, 2018 at 8:56 amEllen_R

    No step on… lizerd? Doesn’t roll off the toungue as good

  • January 31, 2018 at 7:20 pmRedRocket

    Loved the high-level skeleton army. I do not recall a skeleton force before that could march like elite troops before. If they can hold formation in battle, and lack of fear makes this way easier, they could be a Roman Legion level of function and mow down the enemy like a lawnmower. Being able to attack as one, defend as one is key to great army results.
    Read something during the Edo period in Japan where the Shogun policy statement was dead people don’t pay taxes and called for way less killing of civilians. Mid and lower level criminals instead of torture and execution, after a period of imprisonment, were actually given a small farm, set up with their own small business or given other fresh starts based on their skills. Make certain the criminal has a new start good policy to move on. And this is under a dictatorship realizing old ways of terror are inefficient and less profitable making changes not because they were good but because they helped the state. They were still torturing for information and burning arsonists alive so they were not that nice.

    This whole thing reminded me of reading articles on how well run lawful evil states in many ways can almost seam lawful good at times. As the Shogun noticed live productive people pay taxes. The lawful evil is evil in its desire for power at others expense and a enjoyment of some evil acts. But a wise evil Overlord confines the evil play to those who don’t obey the rules or set groups of play things so the populace stays efficient not worrying about random violence only worrying are they complying with the rules well. An Aztec Empire where the sacrifices are losing warriors and peoples and set limited ritual sacrifices but the common person lives well.

    • February 2, 2018 at 8:49 amimaskeleton

      skeletal work force .. heh

    • February 2, 2018 at 9:14 amEnan84

      That’s the sole reason we have rule of law. It benefits the ruling class in a way no other system can compete with.

  • January 31, 2018 at 8:25 pmyodad

    The experiment he did proving that the guardians are more than pre-programmed npcs and is able to experience growth and think for themselves was a piece of exciting information.

    Hopefully they can encounter some real strong people soon that can put up a fight with them after this lizard Arc that is just there to display how op they are for the build up.

    • January 31, 2018 at 11:51 pmPancakes

      I’m not sure we will ever get someone on Ainz’s level making an appearance, but I imagine there will be a few worthy threats before this season is through. Hopefully :P

      • February 1, 2018 at 6:08 amJames

        I’ll just say this, the talking dragon we saw in earlier episode was the most powerful being in this new world, and he couldn’t do much about Shalltear in standby mode which was also shown to us. So you judge yourself whether someone can actually challenge Ainz or not.

      • February 1, 2018 at 8:34 amChris

        James, can you tell me where can we see the dragon against Shalltear?
        Is it in the movie only?
        Had a quick look(don’t want to watch the whole thing) but couldn’t find the scene.

      • February 2, 2018 at 8:52 amthereisone

  • February 1, 2018 at 12:36 amRedRocket

    Oh did not see anyone praising how good Albedo was looking this episode, so I will.

    • February 1, 2018 at 4:31 amAex

      That’s cause it’s a given that Albedo is gorgeous all day, every day.

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